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How a roads contract cost taxpayers over £3m

A REPORT into how a road contract cost taxpayers over £3m is to be aired next week. Dumfries and Galloway Council Full Council will meet for the first time since Covid-19 forced changes to how meetings are held. Elected members will receive a report on the 4G Road Contract investigation and findings. The contract ran from 2013 to 2018 and returned a deficit of £3.25 million over a five-year period. The report details the findings of an investigation by the council into the financial losses on this £29 million contract. The investigation found that the culture within the former DG First service was a major contributing issue to the loss. A statement from the council said: "The service was set up at a time where trading and a separate contracting operation were part of the approach. The investigation found that the former DG First service saw itself as operating independent of the council. DG First (more recently called Enterprising Services) was removed in an organisational restructure last year." Council leader Elaine Murray said: “We are a transparent and accountable organisation. We have invested a lot of time in developing our procurement arrangements and our organisation to ensure we reflect these values. "New counter-fraud arrangements were brought in to ensure we set the highest standards on how we conduct ourselves, supporting local businesses and getting value for money. "Changes we have led mean that trading services are a thing of the past for this council and we won't be entering arrangements like this in the future.” Depute Leader Rob Davidson said: “The findings contained within the investigation report take a bit of digesting. Plainly speaking, the contract should not have cost us money. "The council had already taken decisions to stop external trading and had already made significant changes to our policies. When this issue came to light we took swift action to investigate the origin of this thoroughly.”

<< back Published: 18 Jun 2020, 16:14

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